Lamotrigine | Side Effects, Dosage, Uses & More
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Generic Name:

lamotrigine, Oral tablet

All Brands

  • Lamictal
SECTION 1 of 5

Highlights for lamotrigine

Oral tablet
1

Lamotrigine is a prescription drug used to treat certain types of seizures in people with epilepsy. It’s also used to treat bipolar disorder.

2

Lamotrigine is available as brand-name medications. These are called Lamictal and Lamictal XR (extended-release). Lamotrigine is also available as a generic drug.

3

This drug comes in four forms. These forms are regular tablets, extended-release tablets, chewable tablets, and orally disintegrating tablets (can be dissolved on the tongue).

4

Lamotrigine can cause a serious rash that may be life-threatening. This rash is most likely to happen within the first 2–8 weeks of starting this medication.

5

This drug may cause you to have thoughts of hurting yourself. Call your doctor if you notice any sudden changes in your mood, behaviors, thoughts, or feelings.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

FDA warning

This drug has a black box warning. This is the most serious warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). A black box warning alerts doctors and patients about drug effects that may be dangerous.

Rash warning. This drug can cause serious rashes that can be life-threatening. These rashes can occur at any time, but they are most likely to happen within the first 2–8 weeks of starting this drug. Don’t increase your dose of this drug more quickly than your doctor tells you. Your doctor may have you stop taking this drug at the first sign of rash.

Organ damage

This drug can cause serious problems to other parts of your body. These include your liver and your blood cells.

Suicide

This drug may cause thoughts of hurting yourself. Call your doctor if you notice any sudden changes in your mood, behaviors, thoughts, or feelings.

Drug features

This drug is a prescription drug. It’s available in these four forms to be taken by mouth (orally): regular tablets, chewable tablets, orally disintegrating tablets (can be dissolved on the tongue), and extended-release tablets.

This drug is available as brand-name medications. These are called Lamictal and Lamictal XR (extended-release). This drug is also available as a generic drug. Generic drugs usually cost less. In some cases, they may not be available in every strength or form as the brand-name versions. Talk to your healthcare provider to see if the generic version will work for you.

This drug may be used as part of a combination therapy. This means that you may need to take it with other medications.

Why it's used

This drug is used to treat certain types of seizures in people with epilepsy. It can be used in combination with other anti-seizure medications. Or it can be used alone when switching from other anti-seizure medications.

More Details

How it works

This drug belongs to a class of drugs called anticonvulsants or antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). A class of drugs is a group of medications that work in a similar way. These drugs are often used to treat similar conditions.

More Details

Why it's used

This drug is used to treat certain types of seizures in people with epilepsy. It can be used in combination with other anti-seizure medications. Or it can be used alone when switching from other anti-seizure medications.

This drug is also used for long-term treatment of a mood disorder called bipolar disorder. With this condition, a person has extreme emotional highs and lows.

How it works

This drug belongs to a class of drugs called anticonvulsants or antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). A class of drugs is a group of medications that work in a similar way. These drugs are often used to treat similar conditions.

For people with epilepsy, this drug reduces the release of a substance in your brain known as glutamate. This action prevents the neurons in your brain from becoming too active. As a result, you may have fewer seizures.

For people with bipolar disorder, this drug may affect certain receptors in your brain that help control your mood. This could decrease the number of mood episodes you have.

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SECTION 2 of 5

lamotrigine Side Effects

Oral tablet

More Common Side Effects

The more common side effects that can occur with use of lamotrigine include:

  • dizziness

  • drowsiness

  • headache

  • double vision

  • blurred vision

  • nausea and vomiting

  • diarrhea

  • stomach pain

  • trouble with balance and coordination

  • insomnia

  • back pain

  • stuffy nose

  • sore throat

  • dry mouth

  • fever

  • rash

  • tremor

  • anxiety

If these effects are mild, they may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. If they’re more severe or don’t go away, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Serious Side Effects

Call your doctor right away if you have serious side effects. Call 9-1-1 if your symptoms feel life-threatening or if you think you’re having a medical emergency. Serious side effects and their symptoms can include the following:

  • Serious skin rashes called Stevens-Johnson syndrome and toxic epidermal necrolysis. Symptoms can include:

    • blistering or peeling of your skin
    • hives
    • rash
    • painful sores in your mouth or around your eyes
  • Multi-organ hypersensitivity, which is also called drug reaction with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS). Symptoms can include:

    • fever
    • rash
    • swollen lymph glands
    • severe muscle pain
    • frequent infections
    • swelling of your face, eyes, lips, or tongue
    • unusual bruising or bleeding
    • weakness or tiredness
    • yellowing of your skin or the white part of your eyes
  • Low blood cell counts. Symptoms can include:

    • tiredness
    • weakness
    • frequent infections or an infection that won’t go away
    • unexplained bruising
    • nosebleeds
    • bleeding from the gums
  • Changes in mood or behavior. Symptoms can include:

    • thoughts about killing yourself
    • attempts to harm or kill yourself
    • depression or anxiety that’s new or gets worse
    • restlessness
    • panic attacks
    • trouble sleeping
    • anger
    • aggressive or violent behavior
    • crankiness that’s new or gets worse
    • dangerous behavior or impulses
    • extreme increase in activity and talking
  • Inflammation of the membrane that covers your brain and spinal cord (aseptic meningitis). Symptoms can include:

    • headache
    • fever
    • nausea and vomiting
    • stiff neck
    • rash
    • being more sensitive to light than usual
    • muscle pains
    • chills
    • confusion
    • drowsiness
Pharmacist's Advice
Clinical Associate Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy

This drug may cause drowsiness. Do not drive, use heavy machinery, or do other dangerous activities until you know how this drug affects you.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
SECTION 3 of 5

lamotrigine May Interact with Other Medications

Oral tablet

Lamotrigine can interact with other medications, vitamins, or herbs you may be taking. An interaction is when a substance changes the way a drug works. This can be harmful or prevent the drug from working well.

To help avoid interactions, your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. Be sure to tell your doctor about all medications, vitamins, or herbs you’re taking. To find out how this drug might interact with something else you’re taking, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Medications that might interact with this drug

Oral contraceptives

Combination oral contraceptives (those that contain estrogen and progesterone) can lower the level of lamotrigine in your body. This can affect how well lamotrigine works.

Anti-seizure drugs

Some of these drugs can lower the level of lamotrigine in your body. This can affect how well lamotrigine works. Examples of these drugs include:

  • carbamazepine
  • phenobarbital/primidone
  • phenytoin

Valproate can raise the level of lamotrigine in your body. This can cause increased side effects that may be dangerous.

HIV drugs

Certain drugs used to treat HIV can lower the level of lamotrigine in your body. This can affect how well lamotrigine works. Examples of these drugs include:

  • lopinavir/ritonavir
  • atazanavir/ritonavir

Tuberculosis drugs

Rifampin is used to treat tuberculosis. When used with lamotrigine, it can lower the level of lamotrigine in your body. This can affect how well lamotrigine works.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.
Drug warnings
liver disease
People with liver disease

This drug is processed by your liver. If your liver isn’t working well, more of the drug may stay in your body longer. This puts you at risk for increased side effects. Your doctor may lower your dose of this drug.

kidney disease
People with kidney disease

This drug is removed from your body by your kidneys. If your kidneys aren’t working well, more of the drug may stay in your body longer. This puts you at risk for increased side effects. Your doctor may lower your dose of this drug. If your kidney problems are severe, your doctor may stop your use of this drug, or may not prescribe it at all.

pregnant women
Pregnant women

This drug is a category C pregnancy drug. That means two things:

  1. Research in animals has shown adverse effects to the fetus when the mother takes the drug.
  2. There haven’t been enough studies done in humans to be certain how the drug might affect the fetus.

Talk to your doctor if you’re pregnant or planning to become pregnant. This drug should be used only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus

breastfeeding
Women who are breast-feeding

This drug may pass into breast milk and may cause serious side effects in a child who is breast-fed. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding your child. Ask about the best way to feed your child while you are on this medication.

If you breast-feed while taking this drug, watch your child closely. Look for symptoms such as trouble breathing, temporary episodes when breathing stops, extreme sleepiness, or poor sucking. Call your child’s doctor right away if any of these symptoms occur.

for children
For children

It isn’t known if the immediate-release version of this drug is safe and effective for treating seizures in children younger than 2 years. It also isn’t known if the extended-release version of this drug is safe and effective for children younger than 13 years.

It isn’t known if the immediate-release version of this drug is safe and effective for treating bipolar disorder in children younger than 18 years.

call doctor
When to call the doctor

If you have epilepsy, tell your doctor if your seizures get worse or if you have any new types of seizures.

If you have bipolar disorder, tell your doctor if your mood episodes get worse.

Call your doctor right away if you get pregnant while taking this drug.

allergies
Allergies

This drug can cause a severe allergic reaction. Symptoms can include:

  • rash
  • trouble breathing
  • swelling of your face, throat, tongue
  • hives
  • itching
  • painful sores in your mouth

If you have an allergic reaction, call your doctor or local poison control center right away. If your symptoms are severe, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room.

Don’t take this drug again if you have ever had an allergic reaction to it before. Taking it a second time after any allergic reaction to it could be fatal (cause death).

SECTION 4 of 5

How to Take lamotrigine (Dosage)

Oral tablet

All possible dosages and drug forms may not be included here. Your dosage, form, and how often you take the drug will depend on:

  • your age
  • the condition being treated
  • how severe your condition is
  • other medical conditions you have
  • how you react to the first dose

What are you taking this medication for?

Seizures in people with epilepsy

Brand: Lamictal

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 100 mg, 150 mg, 200 mg
Form: Chewable tablet
Strengths: 2 mg, 5 mg, 25 mg
Form: Orally disintegrating tablet (can be dissolved on the tongue) tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 100 mg, 150 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg, 300 mg

Brand: Lamictal XR

Form: Extended-release tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg, 300 mg

Generic: lamotrigine

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 100 mg, 150 mg, 200 mg
Form: Chewable tablet
Strengths: 2 mg, 25 mg
Form: Orally disintegrating tablet (can be dissolved on the tongue) tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg
Form: Orally disintegrating tablet (can be dissolved on the tongue) tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg, 300 mg
Adult dosage (ages 18–64 years)
  • Immediate-release form (tablets, chewable tablets, orally disintegrating tablets):
    • TAKING with valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg every other day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 25 mg per day.
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase your dose by 25–50 mg once per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 100–200 mg per day.
    • NOT TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, primidone, or valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg per day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 50 mg per day.
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase your dose by 50 mg once per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 225–375 mg per day, in 2 divided doses.
    • TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, or primidone and NOT TAKING valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 50 mg every day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 100 mg per day, in 2 divided doses.
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase your dose by 100 mg once per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 300–500 mg per day, in 2 divided doses.
  • Extended-release form (tablets):
    • TAKING with valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg every other day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 25 mg per day.
      • Week 5: Take 50 mg per day.
      • Week 6: Take 100 mg per day.
      • Week 7: Take 150 mg per day.
      • Maintenance: Take 200–250 mg per day.
    • NOT TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, primidone, or valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg every day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 50 mg per day.
      • Week 5: Take 100 mg per day.
      • Week 6: Take 150 mg per day.
      • Week 7: Take 200 mg per day. 
      • Maintenance: Take 300–400 mg per day.
    • TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, or primidone and NOT TAKING valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 50 mg per day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 100 mg per day.
      • Week 5: Take 200 mg per day. 
      • Week 6: Take 300 mg per day. 
      • Week 7: Take 400 mg per day. 
      • Maintenance: Take 400–600 mg per day.
  • Conversion from adjunctive therapy to monotherapy:
    • Your doctor may choose to stop your other anti-seizure medications and have you take lamotrigine by itself. This dosing will be different from what is outlined above. Your doctor will slowly increase your dose of lamotrigine and slowly decrease the doses of your other anti-seizure medications.
  • Conversion from immediate-release to extended-release (XR) lamotrigine:
    • Your doctor can switch you directly from the immediate-release form of lamotrigine to the extended-release (XR) form. This dosing will be different from what is outlined above. Once you switch to the XR form, your doctor will monitor you to make sure your seizures are under control. Your doctor may change your dose based on how you respond to treatment.
Child dosage (ages 0–1 year)
  • Immediate-release form (tablets, chewable tablets, orally disintegrating tablets): It has not been confirmed that these forms of lamotrigine are safe and effective for use in children younger than 2 years. They should not be used in these children.
  • Extended-release form (tablets): It has not been confirmed that this form of lamotrigine is safe and effective for use in children younger than 2 years. It should not be used in these children.
Child dosage (ages 2–12 years)
  • Immediate-release form (tablets, chewable tablets, orally disintegrating tablets):
    • TAKING with valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 0.15 mg/kg per day, in 1–2 divided doses.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 0.3 mg/kg per day, in 1–2 divided doses.
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase dose by 0.3 mg/kg per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 1–5 mg/kg per day, in 1–2 divided doses (maximum of 200 mg per day).
    • NOT TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, primidone, or valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 0.3 mg/kg per day, in 1–2 divided doses.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 0.6 mg/kg per day, in 2 divided doses
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase dose by 0.6 mg/kg per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 4.5–7.5 mg/kg per day, in 2 divided doses (maximum of 300 mg per day).
    • TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, or primidone and NOT TAKING valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 0.6 mg/kg per day, in 2 divided doses.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 1.2 mg/kg per day, in 2 divided doses.
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase dose by 1.2 mg/kg per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 5–15 mg/kg per day, in 2 divided doses (maximum of 400 mg per day).
  • Extended-release form (tablets): It has not been confirmed that lamotrigine is safe and effective for use in children younger than 13 years. It should not be used in these children.
Child dosage (ages 13–17 years)
  • Immediate release form (tablets, chewable tablets, orally disintegrating tablets):
    • TAKING with valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg every other day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 25 mg per day.
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase your dose by 25–50 mg once per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 100–200 mg per day.
    • NOT TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, primidone, or valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg per day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 50 mg per day.
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase your dose by 50 mg once per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 225–375 mg per day, in 2 divided doses.
    • TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, or primidone and NOT TAKING valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 50 mg every day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 100 mg per day, in 2 divided doses.
      • Week 5 onward: Your doctor will increase your dose by 100 mg once per day every 1–2 weeks.
      • Maintenance: Take 300–500 mg per day, in 2 divided doses.
  • Extended-release form (tablets):
    • TAKING with valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg every other day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 25 mg per day.
      • Week 5: Take 50 mg per day.
      • Week 6: Take 100 mg per day.
      • Week 7: Take 150 mg per day.
      • Maintenance: Take 200–250 mg per day.
    • NOT TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, primidone, or valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg every day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 50 mg per day.
      • Week 5: Take 100 mg per day.
      • Week 6: Take 150 mg per day.
      • Week 7: Take 200 mg per day.
      • Maintenance: Take 300–400 mg per day.
    • TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, or primidone and NOT TAKING valproate:
      • Weeks 1–2: Take 50 mg per day.
      • Weeks 3–4: Take 100 mg per day.
      • Week 5: Take 200 mg per day.
      • Week 6: Take 300 mg per day.
      • Week 7: Take 400 mg per day.
      • Maintenance: Take 400–600 mg per day.
  • Conversion from adjunctive therapy to monotherapy:
    • Your doctor may choose to stop your other anti-seizure medications and have you take lamotrigine by itself. This dosing will be different from what is outlined above. Your doctor will slowly increase your dose of lamotrigine and slowly decrease the doses of your other anti-seizure medications.
  • Conversion from immediate-release to extended-release (XR) lamotrigine:
    • Your doctor can switch you directly from the immediate-release form of lamotrigine to the extended-release (XR) form. This dosing will be different from what is outlined above. Once you switch to the XR form, your doctor will monitor you to make sure your seizures are under control. Your doctor may change your dose based on how you respond to treatment.
Senior dosage (ages 65 years and older)

Older adults may process drugs more slowly. A typical adult dose may cause drug levels in your body to be higher than normal. This can be dangerous. To help avoid this, your doctor my start you on a lower dose or a different schedule.

Special considerations

Liver disease: If you have moderate to severe liver problems, your doctor may lower your dose of lamotrigine.

Kidney disease: If you have kidney problems, your doctor may lower your dose of lamotrigine. If your kidney problems are severe, talk to your doctor about whether you should use this drug.

Warnings

Your starting dose of lamotrigine should not be higher than the recommended starting dose. Also, your dose should not be increased too quickly. If your dose is too high or increased too quickly, you are at higher risk of a serious or life-threatening skin rash.

If you are taking this drug to treat seizures and are supposed to stop taking it, your doctor will slowly lower your dose over at least 2 weeks. If your dose isn’t slowly lowered and tapered off, you will be at increased risk of having more seizures.

Bipolar disorder

Brand: Lamictal

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 100 mg, 150 mg, 200 mg
Form: Chewable tablet
Strengths: 2 mg, 5 mg, 25 mg
Form: Orally disintegrating tablet (can be dissolved on the tongue) tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 100 mg, 150 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg, 300 mg

Brand: Lamictal XR

Form: Extended-release tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg, 300 mg

Generic: lamotrigine

Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 100 mg, 150 mg, 200 mg
Form: Chewable tablet
Strengths: 2 mg, 25 mg
Form: Orally disintegrating tablet (can be dissolved on the tongue) tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg
Form: Orally disintegrating tablet (can be dissolved on the tongue) tablet
Strengths: 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg, 300 mg
Adult dosage (ages 18–64 years)
  • Immediate-release form (tablets, chewable tablets, orally disintegrating tablets):
    • TAKING with valproate:
    • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg every other day.
    • Weeks 3–4: Take 25 mg per day.
    • Week 5: Take 50 mg per day.
    • Week 6: Take 100 mg per day.
    • Week 7: Take 100 mg per day.
  • NOT TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, primidone, or valproate:
    • Weeks 1–2: Take 25 mg per day.
    • Weeks 3–4: Take 50 mg per day.
    • Week 5: Take 100 mg per day.
    • Week 6: Take 200 mg per day.
    • Week 7: Take 200 mg per day.
  • TAKING carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, or primidone and NOT TAKING valproate:
    • Weeks 1–2: Take 50 mg per day.
    • Weeks 3–4: Take 100 mg per day, in divided doses.
    • Week 5: Take 200 mg per day, in divided doses.
    • Week 6: Take 300 mg per day, in divided doses.
    • Week 7: Take up to 400 mg per day, in divided doses.
Child dosage (ages 0–17 years)

Immediate-release forms (tablets, chewable tablets, orally disintegrating tablets): It has not been confirmed that these forms of lamotrigine are safe and effective for use in children younger than 18 years. They should not be used in these children.

Senior dosage (ages 65 years and older)

Older adults may process drugs more slowly. A typical adult dose may cause drug levels in your body to be higher than normal. This can be dangerous. To help avoid this, your doctor my start you on a lower dose or a different schedule.

Special considerations

Liver disease: If you have moderate to severe liver problems, your doctor may lower your dose of lamotrigine.

Kidney disease: If you have kidney problems, your doctor may lower your dose of lamotrigine. If your kidney problems are severe, talk to your doctor about whether you should use this drug.

Warnings

Your starting dose of lamotrigine should not be higher than the recommended starting dose. Also, your dose should not be increased too quickly. If your dose is too high or increased too quickly, you are at higher risk of a serious or life-threatening skin rash.

If you are taking this drug to treat seizures and are supposed to stop taking it, your doctor will slowly lower your dose over at least 2 weeks. If your dose isn’t slowly lowered and tapered off, you will be at increased risk of having more seizures.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this list includes all possible dosages. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always to speak with your doctor or pharmacist about dosages that are right for you.
Pharmacist's Advice
Clinical Associate Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy

This drug comes with risks if you don’t take it as prescribed.

If you stop taking the drug suddenly or don’t take it at al

If you take this drug to treat seizures, stopping the drug suddenly or not taking it at all may cause serious problems. These include an increased risk of seizures. They also include risk of a condition called status epilepticus (SE). With SE, short or long seizures occur for 30 minutes or more. SE is a medical emergency.

If you take this drug to treat bipolar disorder, stopping the drug suddenly or not taking it at all may cause serious problems. Your mood or behavior may get worse. You may need to be admitted to the hospital.

If you miss doses or don’t take the drug on schedule

Your medication may not work as well or may stop working completely. In order for this drug to work well, a certain amount needs to be in your body at all times.

If you take too much

You could have dangerous levels of the drug in your body. If you think you’ve taken too much of this drug, act right away. Call your doctor or local poison control center, or go to the nearest emergency room.

What to do if you miss a dose

Take it as soon as you remember. If you remember just a few hours before the time for your next dose, only take one dose. Never try to catch up by taking two tablets at once. This could result in dangerous side effects.

How to tell if the drug is working

If you take this drug to treat seizures, you should have fewer seizures, or less severe seizures. Be aware that you may not feel the full effect of this drug for several weeks.

If you take this drug to treat bipolar disorder, you should have fewer episodes of extreme moods. Be aware that you may not feel the full effect of this drug for several weeks.

This drug is used for long-term treatment.

Important considerations for taking this drug
take with or without food
All forms of this drug can be taken with or without food
timing
Take this drug at the time(s) recommended by your doctor
crush or cut
You can cut or crush the chewable and regular oral tablets
See Details
storage
Store this drug carefully
See Details
refillable
Prescription is refillable
travel
Travel
See Details
self-management
Self-management
See Details
clinical monitoring
Clinical monitoring
See Details
not usually stocked
Not every pharmacy stocks this drug. When filling your prescription, be sure to call ahead.
prior authorization
Insurance
See Details

You can cut or crush the chewable and regular oral tablets.

You should not crush or cut the extended-release or orally disintegrating tablets.

Store this drug carefully

  • Store the oral, chewable, and extended-release tablets at room temperature at 77°F (25°C).
  • Store orally disintegrating tablets at a temperature between 68°F and 77°F (20°C and 25°C). 
  • Keep these drugs away from light
  • Don’t store these drugs in moist or damp areas, such as bathrooms.

Travel

When traveling with your medication:

  • Always carry your medication with you. When flying, never put it into a checked bag. Keep it in your carry-on bag.
  • Don’t worry about airport x-ray machines. They can’t hurt your medication.
  • You may need to show airport staff the pharmacy label for your medication. Always carry the original prescription-labeled box with you.
  • Don’t put this medication in your car’s glove compartment or leave it in the car. Be sure to avoid doing this when the weather is very hot or very cold.

Self-management

  • Swallow regular and extended-release tablets whole. If you have trouble swallowing, talk to your doctor. There may be another form of this drug you can take.
  • If you are taking an orally disintegrating tablet, place it under your tongue and moved it around your mouth. The tablet will quickly dissolve. It can be swallowed with or without water.
  • The chewable tablets can be swallowed whole or chewed. If you chew the tablets, drink a small amount of water, or fruit juice mixed with water, to help with swallowing. The tablets can also be mixed in water, or fruit juice mixed with water. Add the tablets to 1 teaspoon of liquid (or enough to cover the tablets) in a glass or spoon. Wait at least 1 minute or until the tablets are completely dissolved. Then mix the solution together and drink the whole amount.

Clinical monitoring

Your doctor will monitor you. During your treatment with this drug, you may have tests to check for:

  • Liver problems: Blood tests will help your doctor decide if it’s safe for you to start taking the drug, and if you need a lower dose.
  • Kidney problems: Blood tests will help your doctor decide if it’s safe for you to start taking the drug, and if you need a lower dose.
  • Serious skin reactions: Your doctor will monitor you for symptoms of a serious skin reaction. These skin reactions can be life-threatening.
  • Suicidal thoughts and behaviors: Your doctor will monitor you for thoughts of hurting yourself or related behaviors. Call your doctor if you notice any sudden changes in your mood, behaviors, thoughts, or feelings.

In addition, if you take this drug to treat seizures, you and your doctor will need to monitor how often you have seizures. This will help you make sure that this drug is working for you.

And if you take this drug to treat bipolar disorder, you and your doctor will need to monitor how often you have mood episodes. This will help you make sure that this drug is working for you.

Insurance

Many insurance companies require a prior authorization for certain forms of this drug. This means your doctor will need to get approval from your insurance company before your insurance company will pay for the prescription.

Are there any alternatives?

There are other drugs available to treat your condition. Some may be better suited for you than others. Talk to your doctor about other drug options that may work for you.

SECTION 5 of 5

How Much Does lamotrigine Cost?

Oral tablet

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Lowest price for lamotrigine

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These prices represent the lowest priced national pharmacies for lamotrigine on GoodRx. They may be lower than your insurance.

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Content developed in collaboration with University of Illinois-Chicago, Drug Information Group

Medically reviewed by Creighton University, Center for Drug Information and Evidence-Based Practice on September 29, 2015

Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or other healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.
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